real food abcs - sourdough

February 24, 2014

real food abcs - sourdough

If you asked me what I thought the healthiest bread is, I think most people would assume that I would say whole wheat. However, since you are reading this, you probably know where I am going. I think the healthiest bread is sourdough.

Why is sourdough healthy?

Wheat has anti-nutrients. Anti-nutrients are substances that can block absorption of vitamins and minerals. In the case of wheat, there is phytic acid and lectins.

Phytic acid:

  • The storage form of phosphorus
  • Indigestible
  • Binds to minerals like iron, zinc, calcium, and magnesium which will decrease the absorption


  • Carbohydrate binding proteins
  • "Can damage the luminal membranes of the epithelium, interfere with their digestive/absorptive activities, stimulate shifts in the bacterial flora and modulate the immune state of the digestive tract." (Source)

Sourdough is fermented. The fermentation process helps to decrease the above anti-nutrients in bread. Therefore you will be better able to absorb nutrients from the bread.

Why is sour dough sour?

Sourdough bread is sour from fermentation. The dough has lactobacilli bacteria in it that produce acids that give it that sour flavor. How do you get these yummy bacteria? You grab it from the air around you with a sourdough starter.

How to make sourdough

A sourdough starter is a dough concoction made from flour and water which has sat out on a counter to collect bacteria from the air. Sounds appetizing doesn't it. That is literally what you do. The flour paste sits around for few days and starts collecting bacteria. That bacteria breaks down the phytic acid and lectins in that flour to make it more digestible.

There is a great ebook on how to make a sourdough starter and some recipes for using it. The book is Simply Sourdough Baking all natural Breads with Wild Yeast. I used this book to successfully make a starter that is currently sitting on my counter beckoning to me! I cannot wait to use it.

Do you like sourdough? Have you ever tried to make it from scratch?

real food tip 11 - sourdough bread |